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Friday, February 3, 2012 - 4:01am

Vote On Vogtle Soon

Updated: 2 years ago.
The NRC last gave a utility permission to start building a nuclear plant in 1978. The last nuclear plant to start commercial operation was the Tennessee Valley Authority's Watts Bar plant in 1996. (Photo by Noel Brown.)

Federal safety officials will vote Feb. 9 on whether to approve what could become the nation's first nuclear plant in a generation.

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has scheduled a hearing on the Atlanta-based Southern Co.'s request to build two new reactors at Plant Vogtle in eastern Georgia.

If the commissioners approve the project, NRC staff would next issue the power company a license to construct and operate the facility. Southern Co. officials estimate the project will cost roughly $14 billion.

The NRC last gave a utility permission to start building a nuclear plant in 1978. The last nuclear plant to start commercial operation was the Tennessee Valley Authority's Watts Bar plant in 1996.

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